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Why We Do & Don’t Like Getting Gifts

Updated on July 16, 2013

The Best Gift

People naturally want to have things—when one person has more shiny toys than another it signals something in our brains, a want, and a desire, oftentimes even envy. Presents are exciting because they are usually given in abundance, an array of new items that one does not have to worry about paying for; yet there are other reasons that we love to get good gifts, regardless if we realize them or not. Yet humans are some of the most complicated creatures on earth, and therefore something as coveted as gift giving can also be loathed.

Ego Booster

When someone goes to the trouble of finding a present for us it makes us feel special. The more personalized the gift is, the more apparent it is that one took time thinking about you as they sought just the right gift idea, this encourages even more good feelings. Since our brains fight hard to protect our ever so precious egos, a boost always feels like a positive thing; in which case a personalized present can really do the trick!

Element of Surprise

For those of us who enjoy a good moments worth of anticipation, unwrapping a present is the perfect dose of medicine! Beneath the shiny wrapping paper, or perhaps bundled up under the lid of a cardboard box, awaits a gift just for you—one that remains a complete mystery. Since childhood we anticipate what is hidden inside, I know I wasn’t the only kid climbing through closets in search of my Christmas Gifts in early December. As we age, the mystical wonders that surround presents remain strong, creating a spike in brain chemicals every time we open a gift.

Do You Like Getting Gifts?

Do You Like Getting Gifts?

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The Worst Gift

Regardless, some people HATE getting gifts. In fact they downright can’t stand it, and so after reading all of this you might ask—what is there to hate about getting a great gift?

Attention & Unwanted Expectations

For people who prefer to avoid excess attention, opening presents in front of others is not fun! Everyone likes to watch someone open their presents and for some the gifts themselves are distracting enough for one to hardly care, but for others—the heat of all those eyes as they force on a smile is too much to bear. The gift itself is another shower of attention, making the whole ordeal understandably overwhelming for certain personalities.

Then comes the expectations, like knowing that no matter how much you hate a present you must smile and pretend to love it. In this regard, some get irritated about presents, claiming that this makes the idea of gift giving more for the giver than the receiver—what do you think?

Try being flexible; if someone you know does not like attention or tends to shy away from the limelight they will greatly appreciate you giving them their present in private. Perhaps have it mailed to their house so they can open it on their own time, or give it to them just as the two of you part ways. A nice thank you card, email, text message, or phone call will likely await your personalized and thoughtful gesture.

For more gift ideas check out!


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